October 2 Evening at Cooper Union featuring:
Producer World Can't WaitAudio/Visual sound, colorContact Information http://www.worldcantwait.net/
MARK RUFFALO, ALICE WALKER, DANIEL ELLSBERG, CRAIG MURRAY, BILL GOODMAN, OLYMPIA DUKAKIS and a statement from SEAN PENN
Meetings held as emergency response to passage of the Torture Bill and preparing for Nationwide Protests on October 5, 2006
On Monday October 2, 2006 over 1200 people filled halls in New York City and Oakland, CA for emergency meetings in response to the passage of the Military Commissions Act 2006, and to build for October 5, 2006 protests that occurred in 230+ cities across the country.
The video here is from the New York City event at Cooper Union and includes the following:
Sean Penn sent a statement to the October 2 meetings indicting Bush for the war, the lies, torture, Katrina, and the gutting of democracy in America. Penn's statement was read by Mark Ruffalo (co-star in All the King's Men). Olympia Dukakis did a stirring rendition of the Call for the movement to Drive Out the Bush Regime. Reno, gave people the gift of deeply satisfying laughter as she cut into the policies and outlooks of Bush, Rumsfeld and the rest. Malachy McCourt joined WCW National Director, Debra Sweet, on stage and sang “When Johnny Comes Marching Home.” Craig Murray, former UK Ambassador to Uzbekistan, told of forfeiting his career and sacrificing long-time friendships to expose that the U.S. and the UK were complicit in the widespread use of torture against Muslims, Arabs and South Asians. Bill Goodman, a lead attorney at the Center for Constitutional Rights that has defended Guantanamo detainees, spoke about the implications of the Military Commissions Act of 2006. And more.
On Thursday October 5th, people walked out of school, took off work, gathered in town squares, and marched, declaring their intention to bring the Bush program to a halt. Ads running on Air America radio broadcasted: "Endless Wars... Torture... Katrina... Theocracy... The Bush regime is remaking the world, very quickly, in a fascist way and for generations to come…" Full-page ads appeared in USA Today, New York Times, and on MySpace.
Sunsara Taylor, a spokesperson from World Can't Wait said: "Something new is rising in this country… protests have multiplied… People don't want to live in a theocratic new Rome. People are fed up with this regime and through with waiting for the Democrats."
This movement continues to grow. Join us at www.worldcantwait.org.
STATEMENTS from some of the Speakers at the October 2 events:
Sean Penn: "…At the U.S./Mexico border, we panic at the notion of illegal entry, without blinking an eye as our elderly line up every Saturday morning with wheelchairs, walkers, canes and joint pain, queued up in the desert heat to enter Mexico where they can purchase affordable medication. In the human family, this President is indeed pushing his wheelchair-bound grandmother down the stairs with a smile on his face. Everyone knows that these are true statements… What an exciting thing to reverse this as one America and show the world who wears the pants in this house. Stand up as an American and join World Can't Wait and those demonstrating this Thursday, October 5.”
Mark Ruffalo's remarks reflect the journey many people are taking in joining up with this movement: "I don't want to be up here today but I feel I have exhausted the way we have been taught to affect change in the way our government conducts itself…. I have voted, I have called, I have written letters, I have given of myself with my time and my money, and still we have a government that refuses to respect the Constitution, a Government that engaged in a war with illegal justification, a government that abandoned its own during Hurricane Katrina, a Government that now condones torture, a government that favors big corporations before it favors my children or yours. Step down, Mr. Bush, We are not torturers. Step down Mr. Bush, We are not war profiteers… We are Americans and we Demand you Step Down."
Craig Murray, former UK Ambassador to Uzbekistan who risked his life and forfeited his career to blow the whistle on US sponsored TORTURE, torture, "They revoke our civil rights and patronize Muslims as non-humans so that when they arrest and torture humans we accept this, so that when they tell us habeas corpus is gone we will accept this, so that when they invade Muslim countries to get their oil and gas we will accept this…we are not accepting it anymore! It is the anti-war movement in the United Kingdom that has caused Tony Blair to have to leave office. The architects of this crusade are being driven out. Aznar is gone, Berlusconi is gone, Blair has gone and now Bush!"
Bill Goodman, a lead attorney for the Center for Constitutional Rights who represents Guantanamo detainees, spoke about the Military Commissions Act passed last week: "Congress has to its everlasting discredit laid down on its back, stuck its arms and legs up in the air and whined and swallowed everything the president has fed it… if we lose these rights, we have lost democracy. . . tyranny thrives and democracy dies in the midst of 3 things: silence, secrecy and fear. I'm here to tell you and you're here to tell me, we are not afraid, there are no more secrets, and we will speak out!"
Alice Walker at the Grand Lake Theater in Oakland: "Who are we becoming? Who are we becoming? What does it mean to be a human being? We are completely right at the verge of really not having a clue. …And that is why it is so essential to stop the people who have taken our government. They are not people who can take us, as a species, where we need to be going. They don't know where they are supposed to be going. They have no clue. And so it is really truly up to us -- and I keep wanting to say to everyone, it is up to us, and lovingly -- as horrendous and as terrifying as this is -- I say this peacefully and lovingly because of the peace that I'm saying we need to embody if we expect to see it in the world.”